Festival celebrating Woodstock’s 50th anniversary books original venue

Journey, Dave Mason and the Doobie Brothers perform at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts.
(Kevin Ferguson / BWCA)

To celebrate the golden anniversary of the counterculture-spawning Woodstock festival, the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts will co-host the Bethel Woods Music and Culture Festival next year in the the same location as the pivotal 1969 event.

The joint venture comes by way of concert producer Live Nation, the INVNT agency and Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, a nonprofit cultural center located in Bethel, N.Y., the trio of planners announced Thursday.

The three-day festival will take place Aug. 16 through 18 in 2019 and is billed as a “pan-generational music, culture and community event.”

No artists or musical acts have been announced yet, but organizers promised both prominent and emerging artists spanning multiple genres and generations will be there.


The festival will also include TED-style talks and a historical exhibition at the Museum at Bethel Woods — a chronicler of the 1960s through immersive media, interactive engagements and artifacts from the 1969 festival. The museum will also host a special exhibit titled, “We Are Golden: Reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the Woodstock Festival and Aspirations for an Aquarian Future.”

“Fifty years ago, people gathered peacefully on our site inspired to change the world through music,” Darlene Fedun, CEO of BWCA, said in a statement. “As the stewards of this historic site, we remain committed to preserving this rich history and spirit, and to educating and inspiring new generations to contribute positively to the world through music, culture and community.”

It should be noted that this 50th anniversary celebration is not produced, sponsored by nor affiliated with Woodstock Ventures LC, the partnership behind the original 1969 Woodstock Music & Art Fair and its other reunion events.

Michael Lang, who staged the 1969 shows featuring Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin and has served as the public face of Woodstock, previously mentioned “definite plans” for a golden-anniversary event. However, he is not part of the BWCA or the Live Nation-sponsored event announced Thursday.


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